When I walk outside, I can feel the beginning of the crisp fall air. I hear the crunch of leaves beneath my shoes. But most afternoons, it’s still warm in sunny Tennessee. The leaves on the tree outside my window are still summer green. My house plant is still happily enjoying the last rays of summer sunshine on my front porch, even though I’m begging fall to come with the little pumpkin perched on the other side of the door mat.

We’re in that transitional time between summer and fall; do I need to bring a sweater, or will it be too warm? Can I still wear sandals? Can I drink my hot coffee outside? (This is the most important question for me!) It’s a little bit of an awkward time. The slow changing of the seasons puts me to mind of the changes we face in life as well.

There are various seasons in our lives, and sometimes we find ourselves in a transitional time. We find that there are bits and pieces left to remind us of our previous season, but the new season is quickly marching in. It may be a bit of an awkward time. Maybe we’re not ready for the changing of life seasons, and it’s a difficult time. Maybe we’re clinging to the familiarity of the previous season, like my little house plant desperately drinking in the last rays of the summer sun. A new season is coming, but before that happens, we must face the death of the season we are in. There may be a time of mourning for a season that’s over, and that’s okay.

But maybe we’re ready for the change. Maybe we just want to feel fully settled into the next season of our lives, but for whatever reason we’re just not quite settled yet. Just like it’s not quite fall in Tennessee yet. We’re putting the pumpkin out inviting fall to fully be here, but life feels far from settled. These transitional times are uncomfortable. Change is uncomfortable, even if it’s a good change.

The first couple of months following our move from Utah to Tennessee were certainly an awkward transition time as we learned the new rhythms of our life, and even as we searched for a place to call our own. We’re finally feeling settled into our new home, and we’re creating new routines that work well for our life here. This new season of our life is here in full force, and even though the transition was awkward, the beauty of the change God has made in our lives is undeniable.

In those transitional times in life, it is vital to cling to unchanging constants. The only true constant in life is God.

Hebrews 13:8

Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever.

It is in my time spent with the Lord that I find hope, peace, and stability for each day, even in the most unstable times of life. If you’re going through a transition in life, cling to Him. He will never leave you or forsake you. And He will see you through the changes you’re facing. It’s not quite fall yet, but fall will come. And it will be filled with the undeniable beauty of a Creator who is orchestrating the changes of the seasons, not only in the weather, but also in our lives.

I love lists. My daily to-do list helps me stay focused on my priorities. I have several lists on the notes app on my phone: books to read, blog posts to write, gift ideas, and several other lists of things. In addition to these written lists, I carry countless lists in my head as well. There is one type of list that seems to create itself in my head even if I’m not thinking about it: a “pros and cons” list.

Whenever I’m making a big decision or have an impending life change, I find myself thinking of the pros and cons, the positives and negatives. I’m sure this is a completely natural part of the decision making process of many people. In fact, many people probably write out a list of pros and cons before making a big decision! However, I seem to carry around this list in my head. Although there can be wisdom in these considerations, last night God convicted me of my obsession with pros and cons.

As I talked to friends at church last night about our upcoming move to Tennessee, I realized I kept saying things like, “That’s a positive about moving,” or, “That’s a negative about moving.” Throughout the whole decision making process, I’ve thought of everything in terms of positives and negatives. But when I got home last night, I was thinking about that mentality, and God brought some verses to mind from my Bible reading earlier that day:

Acts 20:22-24

And now, behold, I go bound in the spirit unto Jerusalem, not knowing the things that shall befall me there: save that the Holy Ghost witnesseth in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions abide me. But none of these things move me, neither count I my life dear unto myself, so that I might finish my course with joy, and the ministry, which I have received of the Lord Jesus, to testify the gospel of the grace of God.

Paul went to Jerusalem not knowing what was going to happen to him there. He did know that God was going to do a great work, and he realized there would likely be suffering. But none of that mattered to him. He wasn’t thinking of his life in terms of pros and cons; he was simply determined to follow God’s will.

It may take some effort because I’ve come to be in such a habit of my mental pros and cons list, but I want to stop thinking of life in terms of pros and cons and start thinking simply in terms of what God’s will is. I know it’s God’s will for us to serve Him in Tennessee in this next season of our life. I don’t know exactly what is going to happen there. But I know God is going to do a work. Maybe there will be suffering; this sin-cursed world is full of it. But none of that matters. The only thing that matters is following God’s leading. What about you? Do you keep a mental pros and cons list? Or are you simply following God’s leading, trusting Him for the outcome? Serving Him will always be worth it.